WITH sales of diesels continuing to stutter Renault has announced a new turbocharged petrol engine which delivers greater fuel economy and better performance.
The new 1.3-litre engine - developed in conjunction with Nissan, Mitsubishi and Daimler - will first appear early next year in the Scenic and Grand Scenic MPVs.
Eventually, it will be rolled out across the Renault range.
Renault says the new engine delivers better torque throughout the rev range while improving fuel consumption and CO2 emissions
The 1.3-litre engine will come with three power outputs of 115, 140 and 160bhp with automatic transmissions optional on the two higher powered units.
Official fuel figures for the Scenic fitted with either the 115 or 140bhp engines are 52.2mpg with emissions of 122g/km and 50.4 (125g/km) for the Grand Scenic.
These are reductions of between seven and 11g/km compared to the previous petrol powered models.
Consumtpion figures for the 160bhp engine in both manual and automatic formats are the same.
Philippe Brunet, powertrain director for the Renault Alliance, said: "Our new petrol engine embodies all the expertise of Groupe Renault's engineers, the Alliance and our partner Daimler.
"It meets the quality standards of both the Alliance and Daimler, with more than 40,000 hours of testing. Compared with the Energy TCe 130, the new Energy TCe 140 delivers 35Nm additional peak torque which is available across a broader rev band, from 1,500rpm to 3,500rpm."
Acceleration is also improved with even the lower powered TCe 115 Scenic achieving 0 to 60 in 11.3 seconds - a second quicker than the current 1.2-litre model.
The new engine, which will be produced at Renault's Valladolid factory in Spain, uses a cylinder coating technology originally developed for the high performance Nissan GT-R and a higher pressure direct injection system.
On the Continent, the first of the new Scenics will be available in mid-January. Dates for deliveries and prices of the new models in the UK have still to be announced.